In a video posted to social media, a Yazidi girl once held as a sex slave by ISIS says she escaped captivity and found refuge in Europe -- only to run into her former captor on the streets of Germany four years later.
Ashwaq Ta'lo, along with 60 or so members of her family, says she was kidnapped by ISIS in August of 2014 when she was only 15. Like thousands of other Yazidi women, she was then sold to an ISIS slaver for about $100 and spent months in terrorists’ captivity, suffering countless abuses before she was finally able to escape and flee to Stuttgart, Germany where she registered as a refugee.
Speaking in German with Kurdish news agency Bas News, Ta’lo, now 19, said she first spotted her former captor, a man named Abu Humam, in Germany in 2016. Then, earlier this year, she said she passed him again on the street – and this time, he approached her.
“I was so scared, I could barely talk. I thought that in Germany it doesn't matter what I do. Nobody cares. I thought it's over for me,” she said in the video, adding that she claimed to be Turkish when Humam asked where she was from.
'He started speaking in German, asking if I'm Ashwaq or not. I said no, then he started speaking Arabic. I continuously replied in German, saying I don't speak Arabic. I pretended to be Turkish, saying I only speak Turkish and German,” she said.
Ta’lo claims the man knew her name, what family members she lived with and even her home address. She said she went to the police about the incident, only to be told there was nothing they could do because Hamam was also a refugee.
"The police told me that he is also a refugee, just like me, and that they could not do anything about it. They just gave me a phone number that I could contact in case Abu Humam ever stopped me. After this response, I decided to return to Kurdistan and never go back to Germany," Ashwaq told Bas News.
She also says she’s not the only one, claiming she knows several other Yazidi girls who fled to Europe to escape ISIS captivity only to cross paths with their former captors.
Not long after she says she encountered her former slaver on the street, Ta’lo said she fled Germany out of fear for her life.
While it’s admittedly hard to verify one woman’s personal story, Ta'lo's account may not be as far-fetched as some may think. Germany is just one of a slew of European countries grappling with their new reality thanks to a massive influx of Middle Eastern migrants – many of whom arrive unvetted. One top EU law enforcement official said earlier this year that as many as 30,000 people living in Europe may be members of terrorist cells, including ISIS-inspired groups. In Germany, six Syrian migrants were arrested last year for plotting terrorist attacks and having links to the Islamic State, well before France announced plansto free dozens of convicted terrorists from prison.